tv [untitled] April 27, 2013 8:00am-8:31am PDT
agency the director of the mta, and the director of the mta board the proposed written recommendations. >> commissioner o'brien: the second question, i had the experience where somebody met me in my office; they were complaining about the notification process. you know, if you don't like something coming down the pike, what do you do sometimes is attack the process and say the process wasn't done right. i looked him right in the eye and i said , if i go back to the commission and i go to a lot of trouble to put this on the agenda, and do an investigation and raise the awareness of this issue, is somebody going to back to me from the agency in question and as a matter fact
we did give him a notification. i looked him in the eye, it turns out that the did get notice and .they have the opportunity to weigh in having heard what i heard today it sounds like there really is a notification issue at stake here with how the mta operates, a gaping hole. it is an opportunity for a lot of improvement on how we notify; and we are a big family and san francisco. there is some sort of a gaping hole. i did put forward the suggestion on occasions before where we have some sort of a register that we have structured, that kind of shows notices will get to the people that it needs to get to, almost a database of people who have to be notified for anything that is going to
change, anything for anybody. it is clearly not working . does we are always getting this oh, i never got notified, all the time. the apartment association to notify all of the members of the apartment community; property owners can notify people there; contractors associations. but we don't have a number of the association for the small business group if you will and maybe we need to look into forming some sort of the structure like that so that they get noticed. and i like the idea of a small . business representative being on the board if it is not, is a gaping hole in and of itself. thanks. >> commissioner dwight: i want to thank you coming to this forum. i did attend the march meeting, and stay through the whole meeting and watch the process
and it was obviously a very emotional process. i actually did not agree with the characterization that i read in the paperbut it was somehow inconsiderate. i thought it was emotional. i think that it was very clear that there was a disconnect ,especially between the merchants and the mta. i think all of the proposals on the table, none of them were moderate in terms of the desires of the merchant associations especially with regard to parking. i am a regular cyclist as well as a business owner in the dogpatch, as well as a retailer so i kind of feel like i wear all the has and i did feel that the proposals on the table -- there was no sense of compromise. it seemed quite one-sided to meet. i think that,
i recommend that your merchants association is a very effective one. i am a member of the prairie hole dogpatch association , and all investors should know that merchants associations can be a very effective lobbing vehicles and what you guys are doing on your behalf is very important to show other merchant associations how they can voice the concerns , of this constituency small business owners, retailers, pdr businesses in whatever district they are in .keep up the good work and soldier on. i think it is a very good suggestion that there be some representation on the mta board for small business, whether it takes the form of a formal board seat or whether there is just a formal notification process but i think it is very clear that there is a communication challenge which is at the root of most
disagreements it turns out in life and in business. if we can resolve some of that and clear up the communication channels we can avoid a lot of this in the future. i think that, i got a sense of the meeting that mr. resking (sounds like) took to heart the obvious disapproval of the merchants and agreed to go back and reconsider. since that time there's been an increase in dialogue. i am adjusted to note that is effective so far and whether you feel, i don't think that another proposal has come to the table yet but if you feel the progress is being made towards a more moderate proposal which takes into account the need to preserve some parking on the street as well as accommodate the other interest that they have for pedestrians and for cyclists.
i don't have anybody has a comment on that that i would welcome someone to let us know, that they feel that now the communication is happening, whether they feel that it is effective. >> thank you commissioner, and thank you for your comment. dawn turner, middle polk association. we have been meeting with members of the sf mta weekly if not even more. we are planning on seeing a new design on thursday, one that will accommodate hopefully our interests a little more. the tricky part of it is that this coming saturday and the following tuesday are going to be additional open houses where this will be shown to the public and will be voted on. so there will be little time
to really flush that out, promote it, etc. it's coming and i think it's good. >> it's important that everything be given due process; it is no good of the group also kind of get the shotgun treatment so it will be important for you to consider it very carefully and as quickly as possible and make your comments none. and i think that i am personally interested. we should be able to see it when you have the information. i live on second street and i am familiar with this process and i familiar with the mta's desire to make san francisco look like an european city, and there is talk about making significant modifications on polk street,
we have hotels and businesses requiring delivery as well as residents, as well as restaurants. we are a diverse district like yours. we have no formal sit on the curb and watch what happens at least 12 hours a day if not 24-hour the day and even put cameras on it. i have a friend who runs a factory and when they have to do time and motion studies they put cameras and have other professionals look at it; it is clear that no consideration for how our moving trucks are going to get residents in and out of the apartment buildings that are on our streets and how they will deal with the daily deliveries. once you see this new plan, press on with these diverse needs for both residents and businesses. and i don't know if you have any hotels in your stretch; that's a whole other situation
as well. >> residential hotels? not yet. there's a holiday inn, a large hotel. >> it's also clear that what happens on vanesse, especially during the construction period will affect you. there needs to be coordination of those two efforts, the construction phase and anticipating what the final outcome is in terms of traffic patterns. >> and we agreed, there are changes that are planned for vanesse as far as not being able to make left-hand turns forcing many more right-hand turns , forcing much more traffic on to polk street, which is a topic at hand here. >> i propose, have been proposing a technique which i call pave it and paint
it; paint can be changed. curbs once done our hard to undo. i'm hoping that at least in moderation but they will adopt a strategy the last things to be modified over time and in a less difficult way, like this repainting things; traffic patterns ; change and they will your traffic patterns will change and i think that the flexibility to add and subtract features on the street should be preserved over time so that we can deal with the changes in the neighborhood and changes in the traffic patterns affected by all the other project slated for development in the city. enough for me. >> chair adams: commissioner dooley >> commissioner dooley: when i met with a number of you folks at the beginning of the year, i was very
familiar with this process having gone through this in north beachwhere mta is planning to dig up columbus avenue for two years, which would have pretty much destroyed the entire merchant corridor. once again there was no outreach. we battled and eventually we convinced them to do something different. what i think is the bottom line was his problem is the fact that mta deals with -- they spend a lot of time on these project planning them. the pipeline is a very long time. however they don't tend to involve anyone in the neighborhoods that they will affect until they finish the plan and they are bringing it forward to you. which is a wrong time to be doing that. these are things that seriously affect our neighborhoods and there needs to be amended participation right
from the beginning. i know these projects -- they have been working on for years but this is something that we need , to convince them that people who are working and living in these neighborhoods need to be participating right from the beginning. i recently went to a meeting with mta about the idea of future stations in north beach; unfortunately that did not do any outreach; they didn't even invite the merchants association to participate. i actually kind of just raised my hand to them and said, i am coming to talk about this with you. and once again this is not something that will happen for many years probably. but the neighborhood needs to be anticipating and i think that is the thing we need to get mta to understand is that there are
real people living in these neighborhoods and working in these neighborhoods and they need to be part of the process right from the beginning and you know it saves them a lot of wear and tear i grief if folks know what is going on and don't just have it presented to them as a done deal which of course makes everyone hystericaland upset. and i think it would have a better relationship in the communities if they started very early on these projects. and perhaps there should be some kind of advisory group to mta on the long-term projects that could weigh in as they are continuing. this is going to have a lot more infrastructure projects in the future. we are going to have a lot more large transportation changes and everyone in those neighborhoods needs to be involved in that process. >> chair adams: commissioner ortiz.
>> commissioner ortiz-cartagena: i want to thank for being boisterous. if the world was perfect, and we could meet on both sides, obviously the lack of outreach is a problem but that is a separate issue. if you the problem the removal of parking? if they come up with a solution for offstreet parking, like the private sector garages, would that be a happy medium to start? because i have a parking background. >> we suggested to them that for every parking space they take up they put a parking space in the parking lot and pinpointing places where they can do that like double decking existing parking lots. we are not told that we are not going to build a parking lot. period. in the city. end of conversation. there is no negotiation on that. but doesn't seem to be
any negotiation on moving the bike lanes to any other street at all. there is no negotiation. the earlier question the commissioner white brought, are they doing something about it? yes they are meeting but there are certain things seven stone. we are not going to do this. us, we are going through a lot of sitting at meetings and do nothing. >> commissioner ortiz-cartagena: i know private sector vendor, what was the old mattress shop, off california, with the big parking structure? >> vanesse and california. >> commissioner ortiz-cartagena: i know that
that is where the city planning allow the conditional use. and just a comment. steven i know you and your heart and your spirit ,,and i know everybody here the spirit in san francisco is to be progressive but also inclusive. there is a gentleman out there, five generations, it would not fair for somebody in the agencies was not from san francisco eliminate a small business like that. voicing your opinion matters because at the end of the day we are all public servants and don't forget that. >> we haven't. we've met with the bicycle coalition. we invited them. we met with people from the mayors office. with mta. we initiated the meetings and trying to be inclusive. >> thank you. >> and don't think everything is set in stone.
>> i'm going to give the final count. you are all awesome for coming out and preaching to the choir on this one with me. william, i love what you said, parking being taken away. and steve, you're right. i had the same issues when i was working with mumsy (sounds like) and we did not have a choice or say, and when we did find out about the project , they had already started instead of taking away parking from market street, which is a problem today. this is one thing that i want to address, the city will tell you, we are not building any more parking. period. we have to change that attitude. san francisco not only is an international this mission,
but a regional destination. in some neighborhoods there is no parking anymore i cannot tell you how many times i hear people say we are not coming to castro or potrero anymore, there is no parking. we are all losing business. in each of you coming today and telling the story, what is being done on polk street, is a wake-up call and steve i can't thank you enough. we need somebody from small businesses and the neighborhoods in the mta talking about this. i'm a bicyclist myself. and yes, we do need safer bike lanes, but we also need parking because it is starting to affect business. you're not only on polk street or castro, the entire city and we are the taxpayers. small business makes up
the largest employer of the city. if we go way, who is going to employ these people? i cannot thank you enough and i'm glad we are having mta here next month and i invite you all to come back at that meeting and just keep on getting involved and keep pushing, pushing, pushing. to me this is - in my opinion - this whole parking issue is like the number one issue right now with the merchant corridors and i hear it everywhere i go in the city. i can't thank you enough. thank you. we would like to have public comment? >> i am also on the mayor's 2030 presentation task force. i made my position very clear at the last meeting that when they keep saying that they want to do all the stuff in the city but it's going to cost x
amount of dollars but they only seem to have the budget for half , of what they want to do but what they want to do costs twice as much as it would if they didn't do all this other stuff. i hear all this recurring theme, that everything will cost twice as much it you only have so much money. why don't you just paint and paint, i was accused of oversimplifying the matter what i did make that position known. one of the things that is going to work potentially to the advantage of this is that there isn't enough money to do all the stuff. i'm hopeful that we can prevail upon the mta, that they can make fantastic improvements. cycling would be safer if we would simply pave our streets. one of the biggest risks of
cycling , on the street is the need to avoid all the obstacles, potholes, which causes erratic byciclists, which makes the motorists to be more contentious. they are all breaking the laws in the city. the infrastructures of decrepit that it is causing problems with everybody and if they would simply improve the surface and repaint the line so we could tell where the road is and where the bike lanes are, and which part is shared and which is not we would do away with 80 percent of the problems and 80 percent of the conflict. i'm hoping that being involved in the task force and continuing to engage with you all and other merchants associations that we can make that much
better known to the mta. we could actually make their dollars go a lot further and solve 80 percent of the problem right off the bat. hopefully the this continued dialogue we can impress that upon them and i will take that to the transportation task force as well, which is in the mayor's office. thank again. >> chair adams: let's take public comment on item seven. do we have any members of the public who would like to make additional comments? >> as a presenter -- >> chair adams: any other public comment? seeing none public comment is closed. chris? do you have a lot of takeaways from this?
>> about four or five pages of notes. >> commissioner white? >> commissioner white: i would like to ask from staff who could find out what the outreach processes. what do they do? >> i had a commission with mta and that is already on the list for may six, we will have further discussion with them on that. >> and also, can we find out the reason why they're not building any more garages? >> that is a transit first policy. >> steve you've been around a long time. wasn't there a prop approved in the 80s to build parking structures in certain parts of the city, and you have the one that was built in north beach, where the police station is,
which i believe is the last one? >> vallejo. >> chair adams: yeah, the vallejo one. i did some research on this, a prop passed, they only built one. >> the last one the built was the employee parking lot at general hospital. the only parking lot now built are for city employees; the court building over here, they have a parking lot in the building, that is it sort of thing that still gets built with parking. anything else, , if you're going to build a large building you cannot put a parking lot in there for their employees. no more parking. it just to be that the money you put into the meter, went for the meter maids, in whatever was left over was for offstreet parking.
that was eliminated under prop a i want to say, i could be wrong. >> i would just -- two observations. one, i totally empathize with steve's comment. all the attorneys and people that you may have to do business with from time to time operate downtown. anytime i have a meeting down there i have to have a second thought about how my going to do this , occurs if i go down there, i've gotten ticketed because i try to park somewhere. i want to suggest to the world ,maybe not the best solution, one blanket no parking down there. i'm not sure that is the best solution for there. the second is the mentor enough that you would actually mention it.
the parking lot in front of the police station in north beach i found to be really golden because on occasions when i wanted to take my family out for a meal and we decided to go to northeast i really appreciate the fact that i can park in the parking lot and make the trip worthwhile on occasions . when i didn't have the inclination to take public transport and i do support public transfers well. i love to get the family together ;and go to the ballpark half of the fun is a trip on the way down on the train and listen to the children's comments about what is going by the window. i think one of the issues we are hitting here is maybe a blind loyalty to an ideology that is at the expense of everybody else that needs to be considered in the community. not everybody doesn't drive. i wanted to share those two back comments;
i think the next meeting is going to be very informative and we are not going to attack sf mta. i'm sure they have good intentions but we definitely need more discussions. >> as a florist, i know longer accept orders for places downtown because i can't park. it is not worth sending a 50 dollar flower arrangement to someone if i'm going to get a 60 dollar parking ticket and there is no parking at all for me to park so i no longer take clients downtown because i can't delivered to them. with the north beach garage we have been pleading with mta for years to allow that to stay open later because we have such an active nightlife. we have been asking them to allow that to be open for the people who go on broadway. it would alleviate
the neighborhood is so congested; the residents can't park on weekends because everybody's looking for a parking space. once again the just have not really considered that and i think that is the type of thing that could be done. i would think fairly easily. here we have an empty garage after a certain hour, that they could charge higher rates if they want, whatever. we've not had any success with that. i think there are a lot of things we could do that would involve spending a lot of taxpayer money. >> there's another question that i wanted to find out. why would cta overrule something for mta? why would they be told that's a cta issue?
>> they are looking at a larger, much larger picture. so that kind of thing away has a priority because you're not just looking at a neighborhood. they're looking at a much, much larger picture so their plans are much longer term in terms of what they're planning. >> right. >> right, so the cta is the county transportation. what did difficult is the fact that san francisco is a city and county in and of itself. so there are certain things, certain types of funding that we would not be able to access if we do not have a county transportation agency to be able to do some of the improvements and planning and things of that sort. but as commissioner dooley said, there focus is more on the whole county. while they be working on a project that is a section of the county
is may have an impact on the entire county. but, the other question does need to be asked. what is the integration and how much do they coordinate and work on the planet together? >> that might be a question we ask them. any other comments? thank you everybody for coming. thank you, thank you, thank you. next item please. >> directors report, update report of the office of small business, and the departmental programs, legislative matters, announcements regarding small business activities. >> commissioners, i have provided for you in your report today the numbers for starting out 2013, january,